Operation Gift a military operation by the IDF
26th December 1968, Athens International Airport.
The Boeing 707 from Tel Aviv was preparing for take of after its brief stopover, it picked up four passengers and about to continue its way to New York.
All the 51 people in the flight had no clue that their pleasant journey was about to become a nightmare.
A few hundred yards from the plane most unusual things started to happen. Two young men started to run towards the flight. For a couple of moments the passengers in the lounge thought that they were late to the flight and they were trying to reach it.
But it is not as it appeared, Mohammed Issa and Naheb had a horrible plan, as they run towards the Flight El Al 253, Issa started firing with his sub machine gun, while the other threw two grenades.
The Greek airport authorities sprang into lightning action, within two minutes the terror attack was extinguished and the two men were arrested.
Leon Shirdan, an Israeli marine engineer was killed in the shoot out, a lady passenger had a bullet wound while one more lady jumped out the door during the chaos, had broken her limbs.
Issa was sentenced 17 years and 5 months, (he had to serve only five months, that is another issue).
Issa and Nehab both were members of the Lebanese-based militant organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
They just had one goal to kill all the passengers of El Al 253, and teach a lesson to Israel, thanks to the Greek authorities their diabolic measures were fettered.
The Front never realized the intricate ways of the Israel, if they did they would have chose other fruitful ways to fight their enemy.
It was too early for them to realize that Israel will carry out anything it want through out the world, years later one of the Arab leader spoke in BBC that the Israelite run the world by proxy.
What a huge understanding!, but back in 1968, the Palestinian Liberal Organizations did not have that picture.
Back in 1968, nobody had the idea and Israel did something extraordinary, something even today the super powers don't want to do.
Two days after the terror attack, On 28th December 1968 Israel launched a counter attack.
Members of the most elite, powerful commando force in the world "Sayeret Matkal" landed on the Beirut International Airport, lit up and destroyed 12 planes.
Of the 12 planes 8 were the property of Middle East Airlines, in which US had its share, naturally US Government protested the attack, as Lebanese Forces were not involved in the attack on El Al 253, Israel had no reason to launch such an attack, they argued.
But the entire post is not so important today, but for one man who took part in the operation has risen to glory, and elected as the Prime Minister of Israel for the fifth time.
Can you believe this?
One of the commandos who torched the flights in Beirut International Airport is Benjamin Netanyahu.
How on earth a James Bond becomes a leader of a nation?
What a journey he had !
Life is strange indeed.